Superbug figures released

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WEST Suffolk Hospital has had 26 cases of a superbug since April of this year, exceeding its targeted level.

NHS Suffolk set challenging targets to reduce the number of C. difficile cases across the county between April 2010 and April 2011. But West Suffolk Hospital, which hoped to have only 29 cases throughout the entire year, has already recorded 26 cases up until the end of November.

From April to October there were 167 cases county wide of the bug commonly known as C. diff, above the anticipated figure of 119. This included cases in West Suffolk Hospital, Ipswich Hospital and within the community.

Gwen Nuttall, executive chief of operating officer at West Suffolk Hospital, said: “The safety of our patients is our number one priority. As such, reducing incidents of infection is something we take extremely seriously.

“We have a range of stringent measures in place to help minimise the spread of infection, including a ‘bare below the elbow’ uniform policy for staff and our ongoing awareness campaign around the importance of hand hygiene.”